|“||I'm Jake Fischer. A reporter.||”|
–Jake Fischer, Episode One: Oh Deer
The episode opens on a diver fishing a body bag out of a lake in the middle of the night. He dumps the heavy bag on the shore, opens it and then sails away. As the camera pans back to the bag, it is suddenly empty.
Jake Fischer is on his way Bright Falls to interview Emil Hartman about his new book, The Creator's Dilemma. While on his way, he receives a phone call from his friend Hal, who reminds him to get a signed copy of Dr. Hartman's book for their friend Riley. Hal also mentions that "Libby called again" (presumably Jake's wife or girlfriend), but Jake brushes him off.
As he arrives in town, his first stop is the Oh Deer Diner where he is greeted by Rose Marigold, Alan Wake's biggest fan. After learning he's a journalist she quickly takes a liking to him, giving him a rather unexpected "birthday" dinner on the house. After finishing Jake sets off for his motel in the dark.
While on the road, Jake is distracted by his phone ringing and hits a deer. He exits the car with a flashlight to investigate the damage, but when he shines the light on the deer it cries in pain and the flashlight's battery dies. Frightened by noises coming from the woods, Jake returns to his car as he wonders what exactly just happened.
After the Deer incident, he drives towards the Motel owned by Sam Smith and his son, and is surprised by the number of hunting rifles on the wall. Sam tells him that at night "It's the quiet ones you need to worry about", suggesting that Sam may know about the Dark Presence. The next morning, he drives down to the Oh Deer Diner and meets Ellen Adams, presumably an ex girlfriend. Later he greets Emil Hartman and begins the interview, but while he talks he looks at a picture of the woods and suddenly flashing images of the Deer, a rabbit and a crazy lady. In the end, Emil says goodbye to him and tells him he wrote down his notes but Jake doesn't remember writing it. He drives down the road and looks at the notes but finds a sinister page of a Deer head and threatening warnings. He passes by a hunter carrying a Deer head and drives into a dark tunnel wondering what just happened to him in the interview.
For some unknown reason he wakes up in the woods confused and disoriented with his hands covered in red mud and sees Sam Smith's son watching him and finds the motel is behind him. Later he drives to the newspaper store to see Ellen and shows her the page with the deer head and scribblings and tells her he doesn't remember writing it. She tells him that staying out in Bright Falls gets into your head and tells him that he should leave (might be because she knows about the Dark Presence) meanwhile Sam Smith is seen being taken possibly by a Taken or the Dark Presence.
The next day he arrives in a supply store for duct tape to fix his car. He arrives for the last time at the Oh Deer Diner and witnesses a crazy women, Shel Dyke throwing stones at a lamp post and then attacks a police officer then bites his hand. He sits down while Rose wraps a bandage over the policeman's arm and looks at the crazy woman laughing (it could be possible that she is one of the Taken) He stares at the TV featuring the Deerfest and flashing images appear again of him running over the deer and him in the woods and an evil laugh. He wakes up in a body bag on the shore which could be Cauldron Lake and runs off into the night when a light is shone on him.
The next day he wanders through the woods until he finds his car. He drives down to Emil's hospital after a call from Hal to get him to sign his book for him. Before Jake leaves he asks Hartman if he could talk to him off the record. He tells him about the events that have been happening to him since he arrived and about the Deer that he ran over and the mysterious black outs at certain moments. Emil offers to help him and shines a light into his eye which suddenly hurts Jake, Hartman shines again and Jake runs of with the light still burning him. Back in the motel he decides to film himself about what happens to him at night by strapping himself to the fridge door and falling asleep. The next morning he wakes up to see his room had been trashed and almost destroyed, then watches the tape on the TV. Jake sees himself escaping the strap and ripping off the fridge door and tearing the room apart hearing growling and a loud roar.
Horrified by the contents of the tape, Jake decides to leave Bright Falls but is stopped by Deputy Mulligan, who is investigating Sam's disappearance. When the deputy sees the state of Jake's room, Jake lies that he left his door open and a wild animal must have gotten in. Mulligan surprises Jake by pointing out that it was most likely a large buck or stag, based on the apparent antler marks on the walls and furniture. After he leaves, Jake goes to meet Ellen. He begs her to drive him out of town, stating that "[He's] not in control". As they're driving Jake blacks out once again and wakes up driving the car himself, with Ellen nowhere to be found. The only sign of her is her shoe on the passenger side floor, with a single bloodstain on it. Jake slams on the brakes and just sits in his car, breathing heavily and reeling with shock. As night begins to fall, Jake simply vanishes into the darkness leaving his car behind. The police arrive to cordon off the area and shortly after, Alan Wake arrives in Bright Falls with his wife and muse, Alice. When he asks the officer what happened, the officer brushes it off as a minor car accident and allows Alan to proceed into town.
- It was possible that at one point Jake died and became one of the Taken. When Emil Hartman shines a light into his eyes it hurts and startles him. When he plays the tape and sees himself destroying his room hearing the loud roar at the end. However Mikko Rautalahti denied he had become Taken by saying "What happened to him was something else; that was more like being touched by the Darkness, although it wasn't quite what we saw in the game. (If Jake had been Taken, he wouldn't be having those lucid periods.)"
- At the beginning of Episode 1, the body bag shown contains the corpse of Jake Fischer who had drowned in the lake, beginning the mini-series with a "present moment" scene followed by the events leading to Jake Fischer exhibiting symptoms of the Taken.
- The identity of the man in black who recovered Jake's body from the lake is never revealed. However, there are some contextual clues and hints that suggest the man could have been Thomas Zane (as Zane is a proficient diver in possession of personal diving gear) aiding the Dark Presence in releasing more Taken. If this is indeed the case then whether Zane was acting intentionally and with knowledge of his actions' consequences or not is still unknown.
- Jake Fischer was most likely responsible for the death of Sam Smith as, during one of Jake's random flashbacks, he witnesses the death of Sam. Clearly, Jake is unaware of being manipulated by the Dark Presence.
- It is likely that Jake killed Ellen. After she starts driving, Jake is suddenly driving and the only sign of Ellen's presence is her shoe which contains a small stain of blood. However, it must be noted that if he had indeed killed her instead of simply throwing her out of the car (or something similar), it would have to be by a method that involves very little/no blood loss, such as strangulation.
- The man he sees carrying the Deer head in Episode 2 is possibly one of the Taken.
- The sinister page of the Deer head: He could have been told to write it by the Dark Presence like Alan was told to write Departure during the game.
- The red mud on Jake's hand appeared in a previous episode. When he had the odd flash in episode two it showed the deer, a rabbit, a crazy woman, the lighting of what could be a candle or flare, and him digging in bloody mud or red clay. It could be clay, but there is also a chance that it is the blood of someone he might have killed overnight.
- Jake himself is a writer, so it is possible that the darkness was trying to get Jake to write, like it did Alan Wake.
- What happened to Jake after he was taken by the Dark Presence?
- Jake is mentioned on the radio at one point in the game, Maine talks about a missing reporter called Jake.
- Many fans have speculated that Jake became a "were-deer Taken", relating to the damage done to his room and how Mulligan concluded how the damage was done. This was made fun of in an interview with Bright Falls director and co-writer Phillip Van, and made a suggestive implication that Mulligan was just an incompetent police officer and the claim had no bearing (Or didn't have an answer for the question).